Gov. Schwarzenegger's allies started handing in signatures today for his proposal to take the job of drawing district boundaries away from the Legislature and give it to a panel of retired judges. To highlight the issue, the gov's prop shop laid a strip of wide red tape down the middle of a street in the Sacramento suburb of Elk Grove. The tape went down the street, across the sidewalk, up onto the lawn and over a fence separating two homes. One of the houses was in the 15th Assembly District, which stretches from Elk Grove all the way to Walnut Creek in search of Republicans. The other was in the 10th District. The politicians, Schwarzenegger said, had divided the people, divided the neighborhood, divided the city and community. And he was here to change that. Then he tore the tape up off the street, symbolically reuniting a neighborhood that the politicians had ripped asunder. Rumor has it that my colleagues on the Bee's editorial board think this event qualifies for one of their "Cheese Index" awards as a cheesy political stunt. Watch Sunday's Forum Section to see how many wedges the governor is awarded.
Posted by dweintraub at 2:36 PM
Funny that the left -- while ripping Schwarzenegger for using ballot initiatives as leverage over the Legislature -- has just done the same thing, wielding a proposed Car Buyers Bill of Rights initiative to win agreement from car dealers and their legislative allies for compromise consumer protection legislation. One question left unanswered as news of the deal broke last night was how, or if, it will affect the campaign to make it harder for public employee unions to deduct political money from their members' paychecks. Those issues might sound unrelated, but they were linked in earlier negotiations between the labor coalition opposing Schwarzenegger's agenda and the car dealers.
Posted by dweintraub at 8:31 AM